M57 – The Ring Nebula

M57 in the constellation, Lyra, is a planetary nebula. Added to Charles Messier’s catalog in January of 1779 who described it as “a dull nebula, but perfectly outlined; as large as Jupiter and looks like a fading planet.” Planetary nebula are not planets, but they are dying stars emitting gases. The particular star that caused this can be seen in the middle of the nebula at 15 magnitude; it is a white dwarf star, and is the remainder of a sunlike star. The central region is dark due to emitting UV light, and the green color is caused by oxygen and nitrogen while the outer red region is hydrogen. The distance is not well known; more about the distance can be read in the link below on the Messier Catalog.

'X' marks the location of M57

‘X’ marks the location of M57

This nebula is very small in the eyepiece, but on a clear night it can be seen shining almost looking like a little cheerio in the sky, or a smoke ring. The starfield around it can sometimes wash out the view, or even a thin layer of clouds can make this a hard target to spot. Given some close bright stars making of the constellation, Lyra, it can be easily located.

M57 – The Ring Nebula 05-30-13

This image is 62 light frames at 45 seconds a piece, ISO 800 with 40 darks. The main image was one stack and process, and the larger image in the upper left corner was another stack with a 2x drizzle applied to it, and then cropped and placed in this image for a slightly larger view.

For last years attempt at the ring nebula click through to the post here.

I get all my Deep Sky object information from The Messier Catalog.

Equipment:
Omni XLT 150 with CG-4 mount
Modded Canon 350D
T-ring and adapter
Intervalometer
Polar Scope for alignment

3 thoughts on “M57 – The Ring Nebula

  1. Pingback: M27 – The Dumbbell Nebula | Adirondack Astronomy

  2. Thank you for sharing these incredible photos!!! My boyfriend and I are planning a trip up to the adirondacks to camp and check out the night sky with his new 8″ reflector telescope, and I stumbled across your blog while researching online. I’m sure glad I did.

    Stunning work, simply breathtaking =]

    • Thank you very much, glad you came across my site while on a search of the area. It really is a great place to view the night sky. If you haven’t gone already I hope you have clear skies for the trip. If you did go already, and you see my reply, I’d love to hear how he enjoyed the skies here with is new telescope.

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

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